Jalen Mitchell

Florence County School District Three CATE Director Leon Burgess (left) congratulates Jalen Mitchell at a recent board of trustees meeting.

LAKE CITY, S.C. – A Lake City Early College High School student will represent South Carolina for the second consecutive year June 24-29 at the annual SkillsUSA Championships in Kansas City, Missouri.

Jalen Mitchell of Scranton advanced to the national competition after finishing in first place in the Action Skills category on March 14-16 at the SkillsUSA South Carolina championships in Greenville, according to a news release from Florence County School District Three.

In the Action Skills competition, students perform a five- to seven-minute demonstration of an occupational skill in an area in which they are training. Contestants use examples, experiments, displays or practical operations to clearly explain their skills using contestant-prepared visual aids.

Mitchell won the state competition for his demonstration of mixing mortar for a mold to make a ceramic figurine, the release said.

Last year in Louisville, Kentucky, Mitchell, was awarded the high school silver medal in Action Skills at the 2018 SkillsUSA Championships.

The SkillsUSA South Carolina Championships is the state-level competition for public high school and college students enrolled in trade, technical and skilled service profession instructional programs, including allied health occupations. SkillsUSA South Carolina believes this is the single greatest event of industry and education volunteerism in the state every year, totaling more than $400,000 in donated time and equipment.

Begun in 1967, the SkillsUSA South Carolina Championships have grown from 54 competitors in three contests to more than 1,000 competitors in more than 80 hands-on skill and leadership contests. SkillsUSA adds contests to the championships to meet the demands of new and expanding occupations. According to the release, first-place winners of these competitions represent the state in the National SkillsUSA Championships held each year the last week in June in Kansas City.

SkillsUSA is the national organization for students in trade, industrial, technical and health occupations education. It sponsors the SkillsUSA Championships annually to recognize the achievements of career and technical education students and to encourage them to strive for excellence and pride in their chosen occupations.

The contests are planned by technical committees made up of representatives of labor and management and are designed to test the skills needed for a successful entry‑level performance in given occupational fields. Safety practices and procedures – an area of great concern to labor and management alike – are judged and graded and constitute a portion of a contestant’s score.

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